Strong result in difficult times: Krombacher Group grows by around 300,000 hl
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The Krombacher Group was able to achieve a positive result in 2022 despite all the current challenges. Total output was 7.632 million hectolitres (hl), an increase of 4% compared to the previous year. The Krombacher umbrella brand developed very positively in 2022. An output of 5.756 million hl meant an increase of 3%. And the success story of the brand association around Schweppes was also continued. This non-alcoholic beverage business unit reached the output mark of 1.591 million hl (+9.5%) and has thus recorded continuous growth every year since the Krombacher Group took over the brand and distribution rights in Germany and Austria in 2006.
"2022 was a year of greatest uncertainty. The brutal war of aggression in Ukraine, the resulting energy crisis, rapidly rising raw material, packaging and energy costs and the ongoing effects of the pandemic have presented our entire society with huge challenges. We are very happy that we have been able to navigate through these difficult times in the best possible way so far. Important factors for our very good result are our strong brands as well as the further expansion of our variety and the high commitment of our employees," says Uwe Riehs, Managing Director Marketing, commenting on the 2022 business year.
Krombacher continuously expands its market leadership in the beer segment
The market leader Krombacher 2022 was able to profit significantly from the return of the festival and event business, the upswing in the catering trade and a good summer. Market shares were also increased in the trade, so that Krombacher further consolidated and expanded its position as the most popular German beer brand. The development in the draught beer/gastronomy segment was particularly remarkable. Here the result was doubled compared to the previous year (590,000 hl). In exports, the deliberate decision not to supply the Russian market resulted in a loss of around 60,000 hl compared to the previous year. Nevertheless, foreign business was stable (254,000 hl).
Krombacher Pils continues to be the favourite beer of the people in Germany. Through its presence at music festivals and the strong increase in new gastronomic properties, many new users were able to enjoy the premium beer from the Siegerland region in 2022.
Also thanks to the consistent expansion of its own variety of beers, Krombacher succeeds in continuously inspiring new people and winning their loyalty. In addition to the continued strength of the non-alcoholic product portfolio around Krombacher Alkoholfrei and Krombacher 0.0%, the "lemony" novelties have immediately established themselves in the market. Krombacher NaturRadler has been an absolute success since its launch in spring 2022. And the innovative, alcohol-reduced Krombacher Radler sugar-free and Krombacher's Fassbrause lemon naturally cloudy have already won over many fans. Both novelties were recently awarded "Product of the Year" in the categories "Beer" and "Non-alcoholic Beverages" by the trade magazine "Lebensmittel Praxis".
Schweppes continues to grow
Schweppes in Germany is not deterred even by crisis situations. In 2022, the brand continued on its successful path and once again achieved record output. The Schweppes, Orangina and Dr Pepper brands, which are distributed by the Krombacher Group in Germany and Austria, increased their output to 1.591 million hl.
All classic tonic varieties of the tonic pioneer Schweppes recorded growth. Schweppes Original Wild Berry developed particularly strongly. The variety is now one of Schweppes' best-selling products. And the "newcomers" in the Schweppes family also celebrated a great premiere in 2022. The new Schweppes White Peach immediately established itself in the bar scene as well as for enjoyment at home and is Schweppes' most successful new launch since the brand and distribution rights have been held by Krombacher. Especially in a mix, e.g. as White Peach Spritz, the fruity bitter lemonade was enjoyed again and again in the summer as well as during the past festive season. And the second newcomer from Schweppes was also convincing. Schweppes Virgin Mojito, a non-alcoholic cocktail refreshment, created a Caribbean holiday mood among users.
Orangina also had a sensational year. In keeping with the long, pleasant temperatures, the cult drink with the iconic, bulbous bottle brought a relaxed summer flair to the gastronomy sector and to the home. In the premium lemonade segment, Orangina made further gains and has its sights firmly set on the top position. For many years now, the iconic soft drink with the "Bulby" bottle has been developing into an absolute top player in the lemonade segment in Germany. In 2022, the range was also expanded to include Orangina Zero in the 0.5-litre PET bottle. The new sugar-free variant convinced more users of the refreshing premium lemonade.
"Tastes good. But not for everyone." - but more and more people in Germany! Dr Pepper is no longer an insider's tip in our country, but has gained a solid fan base that is continuously growing. Among other things, with new line extenders like Dr Pepper Vanilla Float or a limited edition for Halloween and a modern redesign, one of the oldest soft drink brands in the world set new accents on supermarket shelves. With success!
The distribution and marketing of Schweppes Germany products is partly handled by Drinks & More GmbH & Co. KG, a 100% holding of the Krombacher brewery.
Outlook 2023: With strong brands and high product quality against the threat of recession
"The past year was a good one for the Krombacher Group. People were finally able to visit restaurants a little more carefree again or celebrate with a Krombacher at festive events. Of course, the long summer was also good for us," Uwe Riehs sums up. "But we are also well aware of the fears and worries that the war in Ukraine and the threat of recession have caused among people. Of course, we have also been clearly feeling the effects of the war for months now, for example in the procurement of our raw materials, our packaging or also in the exploding energy costs."
For 2023, the Krombacher Group is therefore preparing for an even tougher market environment. "The challenges of an impending recession affect all market participants equally. We are aware of our strengths, which we will again play to the full this year. Strong brands, a wide variety of varieties, high product quality and a great many highly committed people in our company are the best prerequisites for getting through what is likely to be a very challenging year in 2023," Riehs continues.
The Krombacher Group already announced a brand highlight for 2023 a few weeks ago. Starting in the spring, the cola-orange mix "Krombacher Spezi" will complement the strong non-alcoholic range. For this purpose, Krombacher has entered into a long-term partnership with the Augsburg brewery Riegele as licensor of the "Spezi" brand rights. And a new light beer from Krombacher will also be launched in 2023. EINS Hell will be available from March in the 0.33-litre euro bottle, initially in North Rhine-Westphalia in retail and gastronomy.